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Title:Environmental degradation as a consequence of socio-political conflict in Eastern Mara Region, Tanzania
Authors:Christiansson, CarlISNI
Tobisson, EvaISNI
Book title:Ecology and politics: environmental stress and security in Africa
Editors:Hjort af Ornäs, Anders
Salih, M.A. Mohamed
Year:1989
Pages:51-66
Language:English
City of publisher:Uppsala
Publisher:Scandinavian Institute of African Studies
Geographic term:Tanzania
Subjects:Kuria
theft
cattle
ethnic warfare
agricultural ecology
Abstract:The authors explain observed land degradation in Eastern Mara Region in Tanzania not only as an effect of a general increase in population but rather as a consequence of the particular socioeconomic, cultural and political conditions in this area. Serengeti and eastern Tarime District were selected for the study. The most obvious sign of today's unrest in the area is the frequent cattle raiding and the loss of human lives associated with the cattle thefts. The militarily strong Kuria have a long tradition of cattle raiding (in view of the demand for livestock as bridewealth payments) as part of warfare between alien Kuria clans and between the Kuria and neighbouring ethnic groups. All these groups are competing for scarce resources such as water, timber and firewood. The conflict situation hinders development efforts and leads to an uneven intensity in land use. Some areas are heavily overutilized, while those areas considered to be insecure are abandoned and taken over by bush. The conflict situation also increases the need for strong fencing which creates an extra demand on the forests. The end result is widespread ecological degradation. Bibliogr., note.
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